The Sims Bustin' Out - GBA

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The Sims Bustin' Out (GBA)
Also for: N-Gage
Viewed: 2D Isometric, Scrolling Genre:
Strategy: God game
Arcade origin:No
Developer: Griptonite Games Soft. Co.: Maxis
Publishers: Electronic Arts (GB)
Released: 19 Dec 2003 (GB)
Ratings: PEGI 3+
Connectivity: GC/GBA Link Cable


With handheld gaming machines noticeably inferior to their 128-bit counterparts, it’s not surprising that many games with an ounce of graphical achievement tend to stick to home consoles. But Nintendo’s GBA hardware puts aside a few of those issues, allowing developers to bring games that were formerly PC and console-only releases to the handheld platform. One such game is Maxis’ The Sims, developed by Griptonite.

In the beginning, Bustin’ Out charges players with the sizeable task of creating their own Sim. In a highly customisable game, players are free to change a variety of physical features. The GBA incarnation does have reduced options compared to its 3D counterparts because of limited hardware, but there are still plenty of options available. And once you’ve created your sim, you’re free to start exploring.

First of all, we should say that although Bustin’ Out on GBA shares the same name as the console versions, there are a few major differences in gameplay. Firstly and perhaps most obviously, the GBA version is not a 3D game. Where GameCube and Xbox offered the Sims in full 3D, the GBA version retains the classic 2D isometric perspective that graced earlier PC games in the series. But that’s really only a technicality.

What is important, however, is the fact that Bustin’ Out for GBA gives players direct control over their characters. Players are now able to move their Sim around as they please, and although it takes away a few of the random elements seen in previous games, this more direct approach is better suited to the handheld version.

Regardless, players are still charged with fulfilling numerous tasks in order to earn money and a make living. Your options and resources are relatively limited, but fundamentally it’s the same as any other game. Think of it as The Sims Lite, if you will.